Media Damage – From a soldier’s eyes

25 Jul

Let me tell you right in the beginning that I am a soldier; that too serving and that too in one of the Agencies, fighting our war on terror, with a small ‘w’ and a small ‘t’ because many of us are still confused as to whose war is it anyway.

In the morning, my post was hammered by Taliban’s rockets. And in the evening, while watching various news channels on our “free media” over a 4 inches black and white TV, powered by an AGS battery, sitting in a bunker made of stones, housing more wild life than many of you would have ever seen; I received another barrage. This time however, these were missiles but of a very different kind. They did not affect me physically but rocked me psychologically. They were so much more lethal than anything Taliban’s could ever produce.

Guess what? These were the salvos of words, fired by my own people, better known as “anchor persons and intellectuals”. The very people whom I am supposed to protect with my life and because of whom I am here in this bewilderness. I am referring to the likes of Asma Jehangir, Hamid Mir, Mazhar Zahidi, Nusrat Javed and Najam Sethi.

Mr. Mazhar Zaidi, sitting in his relatively secure and definitely extremely comfortable environment, had the guts to say that despite the venom he and his cronies were spewing in print and electronic media against the military, the morale of Majors, Captains and JCOs/NCOs remained unaffected.

That is untrue my dear Zaidi Sahib. Our morale does get affected. And probably, it is only our morale that gets affected because the higher echelon either doesn’t bother or doesn’t have time to watch your programs. And it is probably only our morale that matters, because the more seniors do not have to fight hand to hand anymore.

It gets so much affected that with each passing day, as a soldier, I tend to think that I am serving an ungrateful nation through an unscrupulous institution. No soldier can rightly be proud of serving an institution which is termed as corrupt, inept, incompetent and disgraceful by our “Free” media on daily basis.

Your talk shows containing poison about my institution forces me to think, “Why should I be blown up to pieces, trying to defend my motherland, in most hostile of circumstances, in a murky war?” Well done intellectuals! You have done what India, Taliban and the USA combined could not do in last so many years.

Had i had a choice of leaving this profession right away to join that elite group of anchors, making incredible amounts of money while driving the nation crazy, I would have done so. But I know that I do not have a choice. I know that in our unjust system, only me, my family and my children would suffer while these anchors would continue to enjoy their lives because they have the power and wherewithal to do it while sapping the National morale.

Alas, I continue to serve, ready to sacrifice my life for my beloved nation, though with a heavy heart; burdened by the words of those who make as much money in a month as I would probably make in a life time. Those who do not have the courage to do something about those due to whom they harm innocent soldiers like me. This is new type of collateral damage in which soldiers are on the receiving end. It should be called as Media-teral damage.

Long live Pakistan, long live my Nation and long live Pakistan Army.

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